Fayetteville is a city and the county seat of Fayette County, Georgia, United States . As of the 2010 census, the city had a population of 15,945, up from 11,148 at the 2000 census. Fayetteville is located 22 miles (35 km) south of downtown Atlanta.
In 2015 the small majority-white city elected its first African-American mayor, Edward Johnson, a retired US navy commander and pastor. In 2011 he was elected as the first black city council member. He was a three-term president of the NAACP.
Fayetteville was founded in 1822 as the seat of the newly formed Fayette County, organized by European Americans from territory ceded by force the Creek people under a treaty with the United States during the early period of Indian removal from the Southeast. Both city and county were named in honor of the Revolutionary War hero the French Marquis de Lafayette. Fayetteville was incorporated as a town in 1823 and as a city in 1909.
The area was developed for cotton plantations, with labor provided by enslaved African Americans, who for more than a century comprised the majority of the county's population. Fayetteville became the trading town for the agricultural area.
In the first half of the 20th century, as agriculture became more mechanized, many African-American workers left the area in the Great Migration to northern and midwestern industrial cities, which had more jobs and offered less oppressive social conditions.
A reverse migration has brought new residents to the South, and the city of Fayetteville has grown markedly since 2000, as has the county.